Our family joins the 800,000 out there furloughed because of the government shut down. We are not unique in that by any means. We’ll keep out of the politics, but it obviously touches many, many people. We are thankful for our past smart decisions with our finances and are doing the best to enjoy a little extra time home with Daddy.
However, not only does the shut-down touch our lives from the career point of view, but our very living situation since our family is required to live in Yellowstone National Park (due to my husband’s position.) While we are thrilled we have not been asked to leave (because, really, where would all these families go?) it touches every aspect of our life right now. Like the rest of the world out there, we are restricted to where we can go, how we can recreate in our own home and what we are allowed to do. In fact, we were given an official statement telling us all of that exactly. While the “rules” at least give us some guidelines instead of a lot of guessing and worrying about what is allowed and what is not, it’s hard not to feel a little trapped and restricted. Yes, we are allowed in and out of the Park, but not allowed to recreate or see any of the sights along the way.
Here’s the good news – the animals are coming out because the number of people in the area is eerily low. Only those deemed “essential” continue to work and occupy their desks and parking spaces. The elk are slowly coming out of the “rut” (so therefore calming down) and there have been sightings of at least 3 (maybe 4) grizzly bears in the area, which is an usually high number for Mammoth Hot Springs.
While the shut-down coincided with an October snow storm bringing 10 inches of snow followed by a 12 hour power outage (which added a little insult to injury), we are doing our best to remain positive and taking advantage of the (very) slow times around here.
Shut-down aside, we are often asked what it is like to live in a National Park. Honestly, we are “babies” to Park living, having been here just over a year now. These are our opinions and can be drastically different from those that have lived here 10-20 years. Some aspects of it have proven exactly as we expected, and others are not at all what we thought……
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